Amish made hardwood

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 Post subject: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:22 pm 
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I’m preparing to install about 3500sf of PG Model 3.5” tiger wood. The wood is mostly all reading 0% moisture. Some read under 1% and the highest was 1.3%. I even cut one in half, it’s core read 0%. The OSB subfloor is reading 0-8%. I’ve tried 2 different meters with the same results (though one only reads from 7-35%). My first concern is if it’s possible for a house and it’s flooring to be too dry. Secondly I’m afraid of splitting with such a dry and dense wood. I am in the San Juan Islands in Washington state. The current humidity outside is 62%. The PG Model rep has never heard of such low figures, and neither have I. I’m waiting to hear back from the store where it was purchased.


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 Post subject: Re: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:33 am 
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Short answer - YES

longer answer; In Canada we often run into problems with houses being too dry in the winter time. New construction schedules mean installation will often take place while temporary propane heaters are being used and the result is that the wood shrinks and you have gaps. This is the reason we do not acclimate to the site conditions, but rather keep our warehouse at the correct range and do delivery+install on the same day. This ensures the wood is installed at the correct MC and should expand or contract naturally based on site conditions from there.

Now, in the summer, with the humidity being high outside, I can see you having an issue installing dry material and having it expand - first to the equilibrium, then potentially beyond that as it picks up excess moisture. You could end up seeing buckling and such. My advice when installing dry material is to leave as much space at the perimeter as your base+shoe will allow. You know the material shouldn't shrink any further, so really be generous with that expansion gap as it WILL expand once the climate in the space reaches the normal RH.


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 Post subject: Re: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:36 am 
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Thanks. The house is 18 years old. While they do crank the heat, I feel it should have acclimated by now. Won’t such dry and super dense wood split a lot during install?


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 Post subject: Re: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:45 pm 
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Location: Tucson AZ
Orcas flooring wrote:
Thanks. The house is 18 years old. While they do crank the heat, I feel it should have acclimated by now. Won’t such dry and super dense wood split a lot during install?


Yes it could and buckle when the rh goes up. Whats the Rh inside? Should be minimum 30% Rh. @ 30% Rh inside the wood should be up around 6% MC.

Are you using a pin meter?

FWIW the byproduct of burning propane is Carbon monoxide and water. They should not be used inside. You could die and it fills the atmosphere with water.

_________________
Stephen Perrera
Top Floor Installation Co.
Tucson, Arizona
Floor Repairs and Installation in Tucson, Az
http://www.tucsonazflooring.com


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 Post subject: Re: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:52 pm 
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floormeintucson wrote:
Orcas flooring wrote:
FWIW the byproduct of burning propane is Carbon monoxide and water. They should not be used inside. You could die and it fills the atmosphere with water.


Oh brother you're preaching to the choir! I have the same fight every winter. Unfortunately, temporary propane heaters in new construction are the norm for 4 months of the year here in Canada. All I can do it make sure my guys have the training and are aware of the risks. Its up to the builder to make sure the space is ventilated properly, but its the responsibility of every worker to refuse and report unsafe working conditions.


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 Post subject: Re: Can a house be too dry?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 3:56 pm 
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Yes I’m using pin meters on the wood. Inside the house is reading 38% humidity.


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